Of course, the Silverado SS, with its extended cab, also weighs around 600 pounds more than either truck. In fact, it's probably closest to the supercharged 2002 Ford F-150 Harley Davidson Edition Super Crew when it comes to configuration and performance.
When it comes to towing, if that's what you think you will be doing with your SS, the 7500 pound capable Silverado outdoes the Lightning by 2500 pounds with its Z82 heavy duty trailering package, though it only beats the Lightning by 90 pounds in payload at 1490 pounds. There are no official figures for the SRT-10 but we estimate it to be capable of hauling a 10,000 pound trailer.
The rest of the Silverado SS is quite a nice package.
The exterior is probably the best execution to date of Chevrolet truck's new Avalanche inspired look. It's quite aggressive and clean with "SS" badges on the tailgate and front doors. Available in three colors (onyx black, victory red and arrival blue), the SS wears a monochromatic paintjob that extends to the power bar grille and ground effects. In the lower front fascia, the SS includes some styling cues taken directly from the 2000 Silverado SS concept truck. The 20" 5 spoke aluminum wheels are well done and distinctive. It's a shame the photographs don't do them justice.
The leather trimmed interior is top of the line with the same mid-cycle enhancements as the rest of the 2003 Silverado lineup. Extras include "SS" emblems embroidered into the seat headrests and an "SS" logo on the dash. The IP gauges are clean and easy to read with black on white lettering and white backlighting at night. Though you can order an SS with a single CD/cassette player audio system, you would be foolish to pass up the optional Bose stereo with its XM Radio capabilities. The fidelity and choice of music are head and shoulders above whatever has been offered before in a pickup.
Though pricing was not announced we estimate it will be right around $38,000, arriving at dealerships in the first quarter of 2003.
Overall the SS probably isn't the breakthrough performance truck that some might have been expecting but sources are already starting to reveal that this is just the beginning. Expect to see improvements made to this truck each year, including substantial power upgrades and a possible 6-speed manual transmission.